They were sick, starving and about to be killed.

Now they're running free.

Facebook/Susie Coston

Animal lovers where aghast when they discovered the conditions animals were living in at a nightmare butcher in New York's Hudson Valley back in October.

Among the suffering animals liberated that day and divided among four sanctuaries, one family had an especially heartbreaking situation. A mother pig and her two surviving piglets were pulled from a pen full of feces and ammonia so strong it burned rescuers' eyes.

"These pigs are among the most psychologically damaged having been discovered in horrifyingly toxic conditions," Farm Sanctuary, who took in the family, wrote in October. "This mother is very protective and actually lunges at anyone who comes in the pen if she feels they are a threat."

Even though the family was finally safe, the people at Farm Sanctuary had a long road ahead of them, trying to get the mother to trust them. When rescuers came near her babies, the mother would become panicked and enraged.

"The mother pig is so incredibly sad. She is extremely frightened of us and VERY protective of her piglets," Susie Coston, national shelter director for Farm Sanctuary, told The Dodo in October.

But a look at the family this week, after a couple of months at Farm Sanctuary, shows the family incredibly transformed.

"Happy happy mom and babies doing so well and loving every moment of their lives!" Coston wrote on Facebook on Thursday, along with a video that's a living testament of their beautiful new lives. "From horrible backyard butcher to freedom and joy!"

"She is doing very well and settling in," Susie Coston told The Dodo on Friday, "but still very protective of her little ones, who are now big ones. They spend every moment together."

Learn how you can help animals like this family at Farm Sanctuary here.

Farm Sanctuary